Business owners are often busy and overwhelmed by all the laws and regulations they need to comply with. It's easy to be resentful of all the effort required to stay in compliance. But, laws like Ontario's AODA can be beneficial, not just for the community, but also for your company. Designing a website that's AODA compliant can mean opening your company up to the $25 billion in spending by Ontarian consumers, living with disabilities. Here's a quick outline of what AODA consists of and how it can help your business.
What is Ontario's AODA law?
AODA is an acronym for Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. The law requires organizations to ensure that accessibility standards are met in information and communications, customer service, transportation, employment, and design of public spaces. With website design, that means providing certain features and functions to ensure those with disabilities can access the information. These features would include things like:
- Options to enlarge text and make it more readable.
- Content that does not depend on being able to perceive colours or sounds to understand the meaning.
- Any Audio that plays for more than three seconds would have options to pause, stop or control the volume.
- Nothing on the website that flashes rapidly.
- Website functions do not depend solely on a mouse, but can be accessed with a keyboard.
- Images, videos or sounds have text alternatives for understanding content.
- Self-explanatory titles for web pages and links.
- Users can extend time limit on any timed features.
It's easy to become overwhelmed by all the requirements, but as you can see from the list above, it only takes a few small changes to make a website compliant.
How can AODA help your business?
Becoming AODA compliant means opening your business to the one in five Ontarians living with disabilities. Studies show increasing accessibility leads to $9.6 billion in new retail spending. And, since we're talking about websites that may serve people all over the world, that doesn't even include the millions of consumers living outside Ontario that live with disabilities. Plus, becoming accessible is good for company image. People trust a business that cares about it consumers and their experience.
AODA is not only good for those living with disabilities, but it good for businesses too. If you have any questions about how to make your website comply with these standards, contact us at REM Web Solutions.